Ukraine Removes Call Centers Behind Cryptocurrency Investor Scams
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The Security Service of Ukraine (SBU) has dismantled a network of six call centers in Lviv, used by a network of crooks to defraud cryptocurrency investors around the world.
The scammers behind these illegal call centers have used VoIP (Voice over Internet Protocol) phone numbers to hide their locations while scamming thousands of foreign investors.
The SSU’s main office in the Lviv region carried out the operation under the supervision of the prosecutor’s office.
During searches of the six call centers, SSU law enforcement officers seized electronic devices and documents that linked the fraudsters to illegal activities:
- more than 100 computer equipment with headphones;
- mobile devices and routers;
- falsified accounting documents with bank details of victims and other documents
“According to the investigation, several residents have equipped six illegal call centers in offices and rented apartments. Operators have offered foreigners to invest money in stocks and cryptocurrencies,” said the SSU. noted.
“Victims transferred money to offenders’ bank cards and crypto wallets with further conversion to unobserved economic sector.”
In related news, the United States Federal Trade Commission (FTC) said in May that more than $ 80 million was lost to cryptocurrency investment scams, based on statistics from around 7,000 reports received since October 2020.
This equates to a tenfold increase, with reports showing the median amount lost by cryptocurrency scammers was $ 1,900.
“The numbers are particularly striking for people in their twenties and thirties: this group said they lost far more money on investment scams than on any other type of fraud, and more than half of their losses. Reported investment scams were in cryptocurrency, ”the FTC said. .
Two months ago, the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) warned cryptocurrency owners of fraudsters actively targeting virtual assets by posing as support staff for cryptocurrency exchange platforms or payment during phone calls initiated by victims of online technical support scams.
Cryptocurrency owners are advised to enable Multi-Factor Authentication (MFA) on all their cryptocurrency accounts, deny requests to download and use remote access apps, and always contact exchanges and payment companies using official email addresses and phone numbers.
The FBI’s Criminal Investigations Division and the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) also warned stock market investors in July against fraudsters posing as registered investment professionals such as registered brokers and investment advisers. .
You can learn more about cryptocurrency scams and how to report them. FTC website.